A compressor blast on a Churchgate-bound slow train caused panic among commuters at Matunga Road station on Wednesday. While the government railway police said there was one injury, the railway administration refused to acknowledge any injured passengers.
The blast, which injured one passenger, happened around 1.36 pm, as the train was entering Matunga Road station. It was caused by a compressor — the kind used in air-conditioners and refrigerators — that had been left on the luggage rack.
The injured passenger, Vinaykant Joshi (78) who had fallen asleep, was woken up by the compressor falling off the rack at
his feet. “The compressor had smoke coming out of it,” said Joshi. “Soon after, the sound of an explosion occurred.”
Joshi sustained minor injuries on his left leg.
“Nobody else has been injured,” said Bharatkumar Rane, a senior inspector present at the scene. He clarified that the “smoke” which Joshi had observed was gas escaping from the compressor.
“We will investigate how the compressor was left on the rack and by whom. A person travelling by train, carrying an object, which could explode, is liable to be punished.”
Joshi was given first aid in the station manager’s cabin at Matunga Road station.
The railway administration, however, said there were no injuries. “A small gas kit, eight inches in size, was put in a plastic bag and carried by an unknown passenger in the 2nd class compartment of a Churchgate-bound train. It fell from the upper stand and its gas leaked with a loud noise, near Matunga,” an official press note said.
Railway officials said the train was detained at the station and started at 2 pm. A couple of trains were diverted on the fast line and there was no disruption in services.